Japanese drug maker Takeda has entered into collaboration with Massachusetts biotech Moderna to bring 50 million doses of its mRNA-based COVID-19 shots to Japanese shores. Takeda will import and distribute mRNA-1273 starting in the first half of 2021, besides handling local regulatory approvals. Moderna’s vaccine is currently undergoing a 30,000-patient phase 3 study, with early data expected very soon. In August, Takeda had reached a deal with Novavax to develop, manufacture, and sell the U.S. biotech’s coronavirus vaccine, NVX-CoV2373, in Japan, which is in phase 3 testing in the U.K. They aim to produce 250 million doses of the shot a year.
Earlier, a Takeda-headed research group had initiated manufacture of a hyperimmune immunoglobulin (H-Ig) drug for COVID-19, with phase 3 data expected by the end of the year, at the company’s U.S. facility in Georgia and CSL Behring’s site in Bern, Switzerland. When making the drug, convalescent plasma donations from multiple patients are combined, from which antibodies are extracted, purified, and concentrated. The U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases is running the trial.
Fierce Pharma, https://bit.ly/3eiXzVc